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A retired U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agent who has been identified as a “serial rapist” by police was arrested this week for committing a series of sexual assaults in Arizona more than 20 years ago.
John Daly III, 57, was jailed this week after DNA evidence linked him to at least three rapes dating back more than two decades, according to the Mesa Police Department.
Between 1999 and 2001, the “East Valley serial rapist” carried out at least eight sexual assaults in Mesa, Gilbert, Chandler, and Bisbee, authorities said. The cases, which detectives suspected were connected, went unsolved for years.
In February, Daly was pinpointed as a possible suspect after DNA collected from a rape kit connected him to two sexual assaults in Mesa and Gilbert. He was ultimately slapped with more than a dozen felony charges related to three out of a total of eight suspected sexual assault cold cases.
“Bisbee Police Department will submit charges for their case and the other four cases require additional investigative efforts prior to charging,” Mesa Police Department said in a statement on Tuesday.
The assailant in the rape cases was known to strike in the early morning hours, allegedly creeping into women’s homes and blindfolded his victims before sexually assaulting them. Daly lived near all three victims at the time of the assaults, investigators said.
On Oct. 19, 1999, Daly is alleged to have entered through the open bathroom window of a 32-year-old Gilbert woman’s home around 6 a.m.. He then blindfolded, kidnapped, and sexually assaulted her, police said. The following month, he allegedly entered a 21-year-old woman’s home through her unlocked front door, then blindfolded and sexually assaulted the victim.
More than a year later, Daly allegedly targeted a 35-year-old woman, again in Gilbert. According to police, he gained entry through a broken window and later abducted and sexually assaulted the woman. This attack occurred in the middle of the night, between 2:30 a.m and 4:15 a.m.
Daly is facing four counts of sexual assault, three counts of sexual abuse, three counts of kidnapping, and three counts of burglary, officials said.
“We are excited to make this announcement and hope that this brings some closure to the many victims affected by John Daly III,” Mesa Police Department said.
The FBI, U.S. Marshals Service, U.S. Border Patrol as well as numerous local and county law enforcement agencies worked in conjunction on the investigation.
“CBP does not tolerate corruption or abuse within our ranks, and we cooperate fully with all criminal or administrative investigations of alleged misconduct by any of our current or former personnel,” a spokesperson for U.S. Customs and Border Patrol told Oxygen.com in a statement on Thursday.
Daly retired from CBP in December 2019, according to officials. He was stationed in Douglas, Arizona, along the state’s southeastern border with Mexico. He was first hired as a patrol agent by the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol in November 1999 — the same month the women in Mesa and Gilbert were raped.
A spokesperson for the Mesa Police Department wasn’t immediately able to comment on the ongoing investigation this week.
Daly was booked into a Cochise County detention center on May 4, according to online jail records. It’s unclear if he’s retained legal representation.
Anyone with additional information related to the case is urged to contact Mesa Police Department at 480-644-2211.
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